The Hollow Earth
The lost gnome inventor
Xiff is an inventor who found a home in the town of Freehold. To help with a local kobold problem, he created a machine that would open a gateway to another plane and pull shadow creatures from it to prowl Freehold and eliminate any kobolds from attacking the town at night.
All was going well until one night when some children stumbled outside and the shadows stripped their bones clean too. Xiff returned to his house to shut off the machine and was never seen again.
Eventually the PCs found his house, activated his machine and entered the portal and saved him. In their debt, he accompanied them on board The Falcon as they set sail for Ayfa.